Project Implementation in Project Management

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Project Implementation

After the deliverables have been physically constructed and accepted by the customer, a phase review is carried out to determine whether the project is complete and ready for closure. Figure 1 shows the activities undertaken during the project execution phase. To successfully deliver the project on time, within budget and to the specification you need to fully implement each of the activities listed in this section.

Even though the management processes listed may seem obvious, it is extremely important that you implement each process in its entirety and that you communicate the process clearly to your project team. A large percentage of projects worldwide have failed because of a lack of formalization of these simple, yet critical project management processes.

Build Deliverables

The most time-consuming activity in the project is the creation of the physical project deliverables. Whether you are building a new bridge, creating new computer software or implementing a new customer service offering, your project will consume the majority of its available resource building the actual deliverables for acceptance by the customer.

The steps undertaken to build each deliverable will vary depending on the type of project you are undertaking, and cannot therefore be described here in any real detail. For instance engineering and telecommunications projects will focus on using equipment, resources and materials to construct each project deliverable, whereas computer projects may require the development and implementation of software code routines to produce each project deliverable.

The activities required to build each deliverable will be clearly specified within the terms of reference and project plan accordingly. There are a variety of methods used to construct deliverables. For instance, deliverables may be constructed in a ‘waterfall’ fashion, where each activity is undertaken in sequence until the final deliverable has been completed.

An alternative method is the iterative approach, whereby iterations of each deliverable are constructed until the final deliverable meets the requirements of the customer. Regardless of the method used to construct each deliverable, careful monitoring and control processes should be employed to ensure that the quality of the final deliverable meets the acceptance criteria set by the customer.


Factory Design and Layout

Once data is available on the principal dimensions of the project market size, plant capacity, production technology, machineries and equipment, buildings and civil works, conditions obtaining at the plant site, and supply of inputs to the project – project charts and layouts may be prepared. These define the scope of the project and provide the basis for detailed project engineering and estimation of the investment and production costs.

The important charts and layout drawings are briefly described as follows:

  1. General Functional Layout: This shows the general relationship between equipment, buildings, and civil works. In preparing this layout, the primary consideration is to facilitate smooth and economical movement of raw materials, work-in-process, and finished goods. This means that:

    • The layout should seek to allow traffic flow in one direction to the extent possible, with a minimum of crossing.

    • Godowns, workshops, and other services must be functionally situated with respect to the main factory building.

  2. Material Flow Diagram: This shows the flow of materials, utilities, intermediate products, final products, by products, and emissions. Along with the material flow diagram, a quantity flow diagram showing the quantities of flow may be prepared.

  3. Production Line Diagrams: These show how the production would progress along with the key information for the main equipment.

  4. Transport Layout: This shows the distances and means of transport outside the production line.

  5. Utility Consumption Layout: This shows the principal consumption points of utilities (power, water, gas, compressed air, etc.) and their required quantities and qualities. These layouts provide the basis for developing specifications for utility supply installations.

  6. Communication Layout: This shows how the various parts of the project will be connected with telephone, internet, intercom, etc.

  7. Organizational Layout: This shows the organizational set up of the project along with information on personnel required for various departments and their inter relationship.

  8. Plant Layout: The plant layout is concerned with the physical layout of the factory. In certain industries, particularly process industries, the plant layout is dictated by the production process adopted. In manufacturing industries, however, there is much greater flexibility in defining the plant layout.

The important considerations in preparing the plant layout are:

  • Consistency with production technology
  • Smooth flow of goods from one stage to another
  • Proper utilization of space
  • Scope of expansion
  • Minimization of production cost
  • Safety of personnel.

Project Work System Design

A work system is a system in which human participants and/or machines perform work using information, technology, and other resources to produce products and services for internal or external customers. Information systems, projects and supply chains are all special cases of work systems.

  • An information system is a work system in which all of processes and activities are devoted to processing information.

  • A project is a work system designed to produce a product and then go out of existence.

  • A supply chain is an inter-organisational work system devoted to procuring materials and other inputs required to produce a firm’s products.

  • The use of an ecommerce web site can be viewed as a work system in which a buyer uses a seller’s web site to obtain product information and perform purchase transactions.

The relationship between work systems in general and the special cases implies that the same basic concepts apply to all of the special cases, which also have their own specialized vocabulary. In turn, this implies that much of the body of knowledge for the current information systems discipline can be organized around a work system core, rather than around special cases, such as DSS or CRM.

A static view of a work system is represented by the work system framework. A dynamic view of how a work system changes over time is represented by the work system life cycle model (WSLC).

The work system framework (Figure 2) was originally developed to help business professionals recognize and understand IT-reliant systems in organizations. It identifies nine elements that are part of even a rudimentary understanding of a work system.

Four of these elements (processes and activities, participants, information, and technologies) constitute the work system. The other five elements fill out a basic understanding of the situation. For example, no analysis of a work system is complete without some understanding of the customer’s view of whatever the work system produces.

The work system life cycle model (WSLC) represents a dynamic view of how work systems change over time. The WSLC is an iterative model based on the assumption that a work system evolves through a combination of planned and unplanned changes. The planned changes occur through formal projects with initiation, development, and implementation phases. Unplanned changes are ongoing adaptations and experimentation that change aspects of the work system without performing formal projects.

The WSLC is fundamentally different from the system development life cycle (SDLC), which is basically a project model rather than a system life cycle. (Even iterative development models are basically about iterations within a project.) The system in the SDLC is a basically a technical artefact that is being programmed.

In contrast, the system in the WSLC is a work system that evolves over time through multiple iterations. This evolution occurs through a combination of defined projects and incremental changes resulting from small adaptations and experimentation. The WSLC treats unplanned changes as part of a work system’s natural evolution.

Work Breakdown Structure

A work breakdown structure (WBS) in project management, is a tool used to define and group a project’s discrete work elements (or tasks) in a way that helps organize and define the total work scope of the project.

A work breakdown structure element may be a product, data, a service, or any combination. A WBS also provides the necessary framework for detailed cost estimating and control along with providing guidance for schedule development and control. Additionally the WBS is a dynamic tool and can be revised and updated as needed by the project manager.

The Work Breakdown Structure is a tree structure, which shows a subdivision of effort required to achieve an objective; for example a program, project, and contract. In a project or contract, the WBS is developed by starting with:

  • The end objective and
  • Successively subdividing it into manageable components
  • In terms of size, duration, and responsibility (e.g., systems, subsystems, components, tasks, subtasks, and work packages)
  • Which include all steps necessary to achieve the objective?

A complex project is made manageable by first breaking it down into individual components in a hierarchical structure, known as the work breakdown structure or the WBS. Such a structure defines tasks that can be completed independently of other tasks, facilitating resource allocation, assignment of responsibilities, and measurement and control of the project.

The Work Breakdown Structure provides a common framework for the natural development of the overall planning and control of a contract and is the basis for dividing work into definable increments from which the statement of work can be developed and technical, schedule, cost, and labour hour reporting can be established.

A work breakdown structure permits summing of subordinate costs for tasks, materials, etc., into their successively higher level “parent” tasks, materials, etc. For each element of the work breakdown structure, a description of the task to be performed is generated. This technique (sometimes called a System Breakdown Structure) is used to define and organize the total scope of a project.

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